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Elie Wiesel, Holocaust Survivor and Human Rights Activist, Dies at 87

Elie Wiesel, a Holocaust survivor, prolific author and Nobel laureate, has died. He was 87.

Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust memorial, announced Wiesel’s death on Saturday, but did not provide details regarding the place or cause.

An author of dozens of books, Wiesel’s memoir “Night” was his most influential, chronicling his experiences in Nazi concentration camps. The book was translated in more than 30 languages.

Wiesel was born in September 1928 in the Kingdom of Romania. When he was 15 years old, his family was taken to Auschwitz and later to Buchenwald. His younger sister and mother were sent immediately to the gas chambers, and his father died before the camp was liberated by U.S. soldiers in 1945.

He lived in France and worked as a journalist until moving to the U.S. in 1956 where he would become a citizen seven years later. In 1985 he received the Congressional Medal of Honor.

In 1986, the following year, Wiesel was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. The organization called him “one of the most important spiritual leaders and guides in an age when violence, repression and racism continue to characterize the world.”

A teacher at several U.S. institutions, recipient of many honorary degrees and regular participant in documentaries, Wiesel became a voice of human rights around the world.

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